• Kolasinac, Monreal, Ramsey, Koscielny, Giroud and Cazorla are ruled out due to various injuries.
  • Gunners face the Championship side before a trip to Chelsea for first leg of the Carabao Cup semi-final.

Sead Kolasinac, Nacho Monreal, Aaron Ramsey, Laurent Koscielny and Olivier Giroud will remain on the sidelines when Arsenal visit Nottingham Forest on Sunday (7 January) after the five players missed Wednesday's 2-2 draw against Chelsea alongside long-term injury casualty Santi Cazorla.

The Gunners won their 13<sup>th FA Cup trophy last season by beating the Blues in the final and will begin the defence of the title with a trip to the side currently sat 14th Championship.

Arsene Wenger's side are the clear favourite to go through but the French boss will have to do some tinkering due to the absence of a number of key players through injury.

"Basically we still have the injuries we had for the Chelsea game, nobody will come back," Wenger confirmed in a press conference ahead of the trip to Forest.

"So you have Kolasinac, Monreal, Giroud, Ramsey, Koscielny all out. It will be a similar group of players. Some of those who played against Chelsea will play again, but also some fresh players will come in."

Wenger faces a particular headache in forming his back-line with three regular starters out.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles, Calum Chambers and Rob Holding stepped up to cover Kolasinac and Co during the midweek game against Chelsea but the Arsenal boss suggested that he plans to make some changes in his line-up to face Forest.

The visit to the City Ground will come just three days before another London derby with Chelsea in the first leg of the Carabao Cup semi-final.

"I will rotate a little bit because we have also come out of a very high-loaded period. We played three big games in six days and twice we were away, followed by a big game at home," the Arsenal boss said.

"We have to keep our level of focus, of urgency, because the third round is very difficult especially when you play away from home against a Championship team. We play on Wednesday again, so I have to rotate a little bit."

Danny Welbeck, Alex Iwobi or Theo Walcott could have a chance to start on Sunday to give a rest to the likes of Alexis Sanchez, Mesut Ozil and Alexandre Lacazette ahead of the upcoming trip to Stamford Bridge.

Arsene Wenger
Wenger is set to rotate his squad to face Nottingham Forest. Getty Images